Last night, the library held a Black Tie gala here in Pueblo for internationally-acclaimed author Julia Alvarez.  Before she arrived, I had reached out to her through my cousin who asked if she wouldn’t mind looking at my upcoming novel. I’m certain it happens to her all the time—random people offering unsolicited manuscripts. 

As an emerging author, it’s very difficult to figure out how to promote one’s work and self-promotion just might be the worst job ever (besides cleaning sewer lines with a toothbrush). I never want to be presumptuous or pushy, but with a novel, you have to push it out into the world.  It wants to be born, even if the author is hesitant.  

The library offered a dinner function in her honor and I figured this was a good opportunity to personally present my book. When I asked her if I could hand it to her after dinner (I had ambushed her during the appetizers!), she gave me the perfect response.

You have to understand, Julia is a generous woman, both gorgeous and kind. She managed to make the entire evening not about herself. So, when I knelt down by her side at the dinner table and offered my book, she exclaimed, “I want to hold your baby.”

Never have I felt so appreciated as a writer. Apparently, she’s also writing about suicide in her new book Afterlife due out in April. Maybe I’ll get a review from her, or even a blurb, but it doesn’t really matter. She’s reading my book, hearing my story.  

NOT YET comes out in a month . . . so far, my luck has been downright ridiculous.

...and right after we took this picture, she told her husband while pointing at me, "Sorry honey, but I think I'm in love with THIS guy!"  Then she turned to me and whispered, "At my age, dear, you can say things like that."  How sweet!